February 26, 2018
(3:45 p.m. EST) -- Hurtigruten has pushed back the arrival date of its new expedition ship Roald Amundsen by nearly one year. The ship, which was supposed to debut in July 2018, is now scheduled to launch in May 2019.
The cruise line said the delay was the fault of the Kleven shipyard.
"Kleven yard, where the highly advance vessel is currently under construction, has informed us that due to the complexity of the project, they will need more time to complete the vessel and will not be able to deliver her on schedule."
All sailings between July 2018 and May 2019 have been canceled and affected passengers notified via a letter from Hurtigruten CEO Daniel Skjeldam. Hurtigruten is giving all affected passengers a full refund, including flight cancelation costs. Additionally, the line is offering a number of discounts on alternative Hurtigruten expedition sailings.
According to industry news source, Cruise Industry News, Kleven faced financial difficulties in 2017 and had to be bailed out by a consortium of investors, including Hurtigruten.
Roald Amundsen touched water for the first time in February 2018, before entering its final stage of construction.
--By Dori Saltzman, Senior Editor